Traf­fic pre­dic­tion doubt

Western Suburbs Weekly - - From The Archives - By JON BAS­SETT

LEAD­ING plan­ners claim in­com­plete and out­dated meth­ods were used to mea­sure traf­fic for the pro­posed Perth Freight Link (PFL), which could tre­ble the num­ber of con­tain­ers through North Fre­man­tle by 2038.

“This part of the (PFL) jour­ney is the most con­gested and yet the mod­el­ling sug­gested eight min­utes time sav­ings for the traf­fic,” the re­cent Bet­ter Ur­ban In­fra­struc­ture - A Freight Plan for Perth brief­ing pa­per said.

In 2014, State Gov­ern­ment in­fra­struc­ture ad­vis­ers said that Fre­man­tle Port con­tainer ca­pac­ity could reach 1.9 mil­lion con­tain­ers in 2038, and 2.6 mil­lion if the wharf be­came a sin­gle ter­mi­nal.

This month, the Beel­iar Group of Pro­fes­sors’ pa­per was pub­lished to counter “emo­tive and dis­con­nected” ar­gu­ments about the $1.4 bil­lion PFL that cur­rently stops 2.4km from the port.

The au­thors – Curtin Univer­sity’s Peter New­man, Has­sell in­fra­struc­ture principal Chris Mel­som, ur­ban strate­gist Mike Mouritz and in­fra­struc­ture ad­viser Cameron Ed­wards – want de­bate on pro­pos­als for a sec­ond port restarted af­ter anal­y­sis stopped in 2014, when the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment in­di­cated its sup­port for the PFL.

“For some rea­son, this anal­y­sis was not pro­vided to the Com­mon­wealth as an al­ter­na­tive to the PFL,” the pa­per claims.

The State Gov­ern­ment was crit­i­cised in the pa­per for us­ing an age­ing Re­gional Op­er­a­tions Model (ROM) for the PFL be­cause the ROM mea­sures only traf­fic and not changes in ve­hi­cle types on the route, known as “mode shift”.

In 2014, a re­view by the State Govern­ment­backed Plan­ning and Trans­port Re­search Cen­tre, op­er­ated by UWA, Curtin and Edith Cowan uni­ver­si­ties, rec­om­mended the new Perth Land and Trans­port In­te­grated Ur­ban Model (Plat­inum) be used to equal the world’s best.

But Plat­inum was not adopted.

The pa­per also ques­tioned whether traf­fic mod­el­ling given to Can­berra was in­com­plete be­cause the link’s fi­nal Roe 10 sec­tion was not de­signed or planned.

“We also need to re­mem­ber that part of the ex­ist­ing pro­pos­als in­clude other out-of-date thinking, in­clud­ing widen­ing Curtin Av­enue through the western sub­urbs and con­nec­tion to the Stephen­son High­way align­ment fur­ther north,” the pa­per said.

Trans­port Min­is­ter Bill Marmion said Main Road’s Roe 8 and Roe 9 mod­el­ling was ac­cu­rate and based on es­tab­lished prac­tice for ma­jor projects.

Trucks leav­ing the port.

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